An online user going by the name of ‘Down with Disney’s Treatment of Franchises and its Fanboys’ has vowed to deliberately deflate and taint the Rotten Tomatoes audience score for the upcoming Marvel Studios release “Black Panther”.
This appears to be the same user who took credit for the RT audience score for “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” which had the worst Rotten Tomatoes audience score of any film in the franchise – even as critics and the CinemaScore results for it were high. While that was an apparent case of spambots, this is more a concerted ground effort trying to enlist like-minded people to help out.
Whoever they are, they have started a Facebook page (now defunct) to organise its community to take action and sabotage the score due to their claims of Disney using corporate manipulation to create “falsified bad press for the DCEU”. They also seem to be leaning politically to the right with their boards filled with plenty of ‘SJW’ and minority bashing comments veering into hate speech before it was taken down.
Rotten Tomatoes has responded to the threat, saying in a statement:
We at Rotten Tomatoes are proud to have become a platform for passionate fans to debate and discuss entertainment and we take that responsibility seriously. While we respect our fans’ diverse opinions, we do not condone hate speech. Our team of security, network and social experts continue to closely monitor our platforms and any users who engage in such activities will be blocked from our site and their comments removed as quickly as possible.”
The Ryan Coogler-directed film is expected to open in the $150 million range at this point, buoyed by recent stellar online reaction from early media screenings. The film opens in cinemas everywhere on February 16th.